Visiting Ofstad Scholar Carrie Gillon lecture, “The Squamish Language Policy and Language Commission”

In this talk, Dr. Gillon describes the Language Policy passed by Squamish Nation Council in 2021. The Squamish Nation’s Language Policy is intended to:

  • develop and maintain highly proficient and fluent speakers of Sḵwx̱wú7mesh sníchim (Squamish language)
  • support Sḵwx̱wú7mesh sníchim revitalization, maintenance, and documentation
  • research language revitalization, etc.
  • deliver language initiatives, programs & services for the Squamish people
  • oversee use of the language by employees of the Squamish Nation, volunteers, committee members, academic institutions, and external partners
  • develop a pay structure to incentivize staff members of the Nation to become speakers

The Language Policy also mandated the creation of the Language Commission (Paháyikwup), which is charged with creating new speakers and revitalizing the language. Dr. Gillon talks about her role as the Language Commission coordinator, and the steps taken to revitalize Sḵwx̱wú7mesh sníchim so far.